— Duke Basketball (@dukeblueplanet) June 21, 2016
The Los Angeles Lakers knew that fortune had smiled upon them on the night of the NBA draft lottery. Going into the night, they had just a 56 percent chance to keep their top-three protected pick. After the ping-pong balls settled, general manager Mitch Kupchak was relieved to learn that the Lakers had not just kept their pick, but they ended up with the second overall selection in what many consider a two-player draft.
With all signs pointing towards the Philadelphia 76ers selecting LSU’s Ben Simmons with the first pick during Thursday night’s NBA Draft, it appears that Duke’s Brandon Ingram will most likely wind up going to Los Angeles.
A video recently posted to Duke Basketball’s Twitter account shows why Lakers fans should be excited about Ingram potentially wearing the purple and gold. It gives us an inside look at his roots in Kinston, North Carolina, where he won four state high school championships.
Ingram grew up in a basketball family, honing his skills at the rec center that his father ran. He frequently played with his older brother, pitting himself against players who were bigger and stronger than him. In spite of his 195-pound frame, there is a surprising toughness to Ingram that should serve him well at the NBA level.
He also has an impressive work ethic and the drive to shun the party scene, a trait which would serve him well in Los Angeles. Ingram even chose not to attend his senior prom in high school, instead opting to work on his game at the gym.
While Ingram only spent a year at Duke, he used his time wisely, learning the intricacies of the game from Coach K. He may be quiet, but Ingram’s shooting ability, incredible wingspan, and natural talent allow his game to do the talking for him.
Nothing is guaranteed until the pick is announced on Thursday night, but if Ingram’s name is called with the second pick, the Lakers will be getting one heck of a talent.